By Carlo Versano
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti mulled a 2020 presidential run in an interview on Cheddar Monday, saying the cure to America's "odious" political sickness may be found in city hall.
"I hope that even if I don't run, that mayors will think about jumping in," Garcetti said, "because I think we could cut through a lot of that partisanship right now."
Garcetti, however, hedged on whether he would leave Los Angeles, where he has served as a Democrat since 2013, for a bid at the White House.
"I love L.A," Garcetti added. "If I were to run for president it would only be by seeing that I could do more for L.A."
And many in his hometown hope he stays put. The Los Angeles Times ran an opinion column last week urging Garcetti not to run for president, saying, "there's plenty for you to do in Los Angeles."
As part of his administration's goal of positioning L.A. as a tech-forward cradle of innovation to rival any city to the north, Garcetti unveiled the "Pledge LA" initiative to increase diversity among the city's burgeoning tech sector as well as L.A.-based companies that may not consider themselves tech players. "What isn't a tech job today?" he asked.
From Soylent and downtown food-science labs to Elon Musk's Boring Company digging tunnels under the city, to Netflix's ($NFLX) continued disruption of Hollywood, "everything is really technology."
Garcetti is asking L.A. businesses to take stock and make commitments to hire more women and people of color. He's also asking his roster of CEOs to "take that same sort of spirit of innovation and help L.A." by donating time and resources to address civic issues like homelessness and traffic.
For his part, Garcetti noted that he began a city library STEM program that is already majority female, and increased the number of women in his board and commissioner roles to more than 50 percent in six months. If slow-moving government can do that, he asks, imagine what the private sector can do for its own ranks.
"We want to make sure they don't look like the demographics from 'Mad Men'," he said.
For full interview click here.